Good Samaritans pay to fly crash survivors home for Christmas

The Canadian survivors of a deadly car crash in Montana will be catching a plane home for the holidays, thanks to the help of several generous strangers.

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Tania Doucette says her two daughters and their grandfather will be flying back to Edmonton from Montana in time for Christmas, after a GoFundMe campaign raised enough money to pay for their airline tickets home.

The three Canadians were involved in a single-vehicle crash on Monday, that resulted in the death of the girls' grandmother.

The girls were heading to Montana with their grandparents when their grandfather lost control of their vehicle and struck a guardrail, police said. The pickup truck rolled over and Johanna Doucette, 55, was thrown from the vehicle. She did not survive the crash.

"She was sleeping, she had woken up to re-adjust the seatbelt and stretch and as she took the seatbelt off they hit ice," Tania Doucette told CTV Edmonton.

Tania Doucette's father, Greg, and her daughters, Liberty and Brooklyn, were taken to hospital and later released. Doucette's stepmother was pronounced dead at the hospital.

With her family grieving and her father and two daughters stranded in Montana, Tania Doucette turned to crowdfunding for a way to get them home. She set up a GoFundMe page pleading for help to pay for their return flights, and managed to raise enough money to get all three home. The crowdfunding page raised about $5,000, and a generous Edmonton dentist stepped in to pay the rest of the costs for the flight. Some of the money will also go toward bringing Johanna Doucette's body home.

"I just wanted to genuinely help the family," Misha Susoeff told CTV Edmonton. He said he was moved to help the girls, ages 7 and 11, because he wanted them to spend Christmas with their family.

"When I thought about those two young girls in the middle of nowhere, spending Christmas morning in a hospital or in a police station or in a hotel, with their mother pacing, I just couldn't pass up the opportunity," he said. "I had to do it."

Tania Doucette thanked Susoeff and all the other donors to her GoFundMe campaign in a post on the fundraising site.

"Words could never express how much this means to ALL of us," she wrote.

Doucette told CTV Edmonton that she's going to hold her children tight, the moment she sees them at the airport.

"It's going to be a group hug," she said.



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